Features Research Archives

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Daniel Strohl’s Last Article with Hemmings

• CATEGORIES: Features

Bill shared Daniel Strohl’s last article for Hemmings, which is less an article and more of a wish list of articles he had hoped to write, but, for various reasons, couldn’t. One of those article was the FC-150 Commuter Van, but he never uncovered it. You can read his “Untold Auto Stories” below:



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Video: Salvage Workshop Saves Five Jeeps and Parts

• CATEGORIES: Features, videos

Barry shared this cool video showing a Salvage Workshops great find: five jeeps and parts.

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Feel Good: A Group of Students Rebuild Jeep

• CATEGORIES: Builds, Features

Bill shared this nice story about a group of students who rebuilt a family’s jeep after the owner died.



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Roberto Flores’ Newest Sketches

• CATEGORIES: Artists/Drawings, Features • TAGS: .

Roberto shared these recent sketches of a brake assembly.

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“Phantom Automobiles” Postcard

• CATEGORIES: Bantam-FordGP-WillysMA-EarlyJPs, Features, Postcards

Chris was wondering if anyone knows more about why this postcard describes these vehicles as “Phantoms”, especially when the look more like Ford GPs than Bantam prototypes?

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CJ-5 Dealer Letter

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Documents, Features

Toby purchased a 1966 CJ-5 from an original owner and found this letter inside the owners manual. Note the last paragraph (no coverage for squeak and rattles, lol).


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10 Unreliable Post 2000 Jeeps

• CATEGORIES: Features

Bill shared this article about some modern-day jeeps you might not want to purchase. I really can’t say how accurate most of this article is, as I’ve never owned or driven any of these.



This is wrongly captioned as a 2015 Wrangler in the article.

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2023 Toledo JeepFest

• CATEGORIES: Event, Features

Roger Martin attended this year’s Toledo Jeep Fest this weekend. He brought along his 1947 CJ-2A, an M-677, and his FC Fire Truck. He also took photos of the jeeps at the show, along with some merchandise for sale and a few of the parade.

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February 1960 Jeep News

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features • TAGS: .

UPDATE: These two February 1960 documents reference the “Corner the Market” contest also referenced by the February 1960 issue of Jeep News, as well as the January 1960 issue and the April 1960 issue (I don’t have the March issue).

1960-02-15-corner-the-market-bulletin 1960-02-28-corner-the-market-bulletin


Originally Published June 03, 2020:

This issue of Willys News shows that Jeep dealers were experience continued growth. This issue also suggests that the ashtrays and cuff-tie-links were introduced in 1960. Anyone have the full page 1959 Nieman Marcus catalog ad of the newly introduced DJ-3A Surrey mentioned on the last page?

Photos Photos Photos Photos Photos

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Roof Palomino Facebook Group

• CATEGORIES: Features • TAGS: .

Roger Martin shared the news that a Roof Palomino group exists on Facebook. Given their rarity, I wouldn’t have guess that.



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Andy’s Argentine to Alaska Hiccup near Portland

• CATEGORIES: Features

UPDATE: Andy Reached Alaska!

The intrepid explorer overcame his obstacles and made it to the Alaska border the other day. Congrats on the continuing journey!




Originally posted May 30, 2023: 


Andy, from Argentina, standing in his engine compartment at Washougal Classic Jeep while Richard and Jake work on his engine.

Recently, through Facebook, I was made aware of Andy, who is driving his Willys wagon from Argentina to Alaska. I lack many of the details, but I know that by early May Andy had made it all the way to Oregon when his engine finally gave out. Unable to go any farther, he and friends reached out through Facebook to find someone would could help him fix his engine (a couple posts on this FB page).

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Richard Darr of Washougal Classic Jeep, near Vancouver, Washington, volunteered to help. While Andy stayed with a friend in Tigard, Oregon, Richard towed the vehicle to his place, diagnosed the problems:

“The engine has some serious issues for sure and the cracks have us spooked as well but we are going to try and breathe life back into this engine to hopefully finish the journey to Alaska. We really don’t know if the cracks happened recently or been there for quite some time. We are going to put a new timing set in and reseal the valves, clean out all the blockages in the cooling ports and new head gasket and top it off with a tune up and see what happens. Drive it around locally a bit to see how it takes. If it seems healthy enough to send Andy on his way then off he goes.. if not.. then we will have to switch gears and come up with a replacement engine or something. Jake and I are happy to do what we can to get Andy to the finish line of his more than 8 year Trek.”

After a couple weeks, Richard and Jake were able to repair the engine enough that Andy decided not to invest in another block. They test drove the wagon recently and are satisfied it is ready. Andy test drove it as well and says it is more powerful than it has been since Bolivia (I can only guess something happened to the engine there?). So, Andy is prepared to take off towards Alaska again.



Jake and Richard testing the wagon’s rebuilt engine, with Jake driving.

During the process, did require Richard to spend $400 of his own money (plus all the time). I’m going to send Richard $200 to cover half his expenses. If anyone wants to donate as well, you can send money directly to me through PayPal (Payment@ewillys.com) and I will send Richard an additional check based on any donations (he doesn’t have PayPal). If you have any questions, just email me: d@deilers.com.


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Sidebars and Netting Done; Frame Washed

• CATEGORIES: Features • TAGS: .

UPDATE: The weather was perfect, cloudy, not so hot, and windless, for painting the chassis outside. 

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It’s been a busy few days. I completed the sidebars and netting, then washed the frame. It’s drying awaiting a new coat of paint. While I’d prefer to disassemble and properly clean and paint everything, that’s just not possible at this point.

There’s nothing much fancy about the side bars. A bolt secures the back of the bar and acts as the pivot point. A 3/8’s pin holds the front in place and is pulled to release the bar so a person can enter/exit the jeep. The netting is held in place at the front by a seat belt buckle. Undo that, then pull the bottom bar forward slightly, and the bottom of the net comes loose, then a person can swing the netting onto the top. (note, this phone was taken before I welded a short horizontal tube which will hold the back of the top netting bar in place .. the orange clamp was just to figure out where the tube should go).


With the bars and netting done, the mods are pretty much complete. Now, to clean, paint, and assembly. Hopefully, everything goes back to gather as it did before …

Here’s the chassis a little cleaner. My goal is simply to cover the green and paint the bare metal.

The front tires will go on some aluminum rims, while there will be desert dogs in the back. The back rims remain undecided. I’d rather not use the hurricane finned rims for the rear, but don’t want to crack them. I have some other aluminum rims for the back, but they are six lug, while the rear axle is now a five lug drum.

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Electronic Model Jeep Video

• CATEGORIES: Features, Models • TAGS: .

Frank shared this video showing the creation of a small jeep that can drive and park under its own power.



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Carnival Ride Jeep Ford City, PA $225

• CATEGORIES: Features, Models

Steve shared this amusement ride kiddie jeep that’s for sale. It looks like it was once part of one of these kiddie carnival rides: see video –> http://www.ewillys.com/2012/10/02/old-jeep-carnival-ride-found-in-2011-at-garage-sale/


“FOR SALE: A RARE VINTAGE WILLYS JEEP AMUSEMENT PARK/CARNIVAL RIDE/ KIDDIE RIDE. From The 1950’s & 1060’s. Heavy Steel Construction. The Steering Is Controlled By The Front Bar. Pretty Solid except For Some Rust Hole Spots On Rear. No Damage. Restore It Or Use As Is. Last Photo Is Of One I found On Internet That Looks Pretty Close To It.”

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Pedal Jeep and Matching Trailer Watseka, IL $2000

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

Tom shared this nice looking combo of pedal jeep and matching trailer. I can’t remember seeing a trailer that matched a pedal jeep.


“Purchased in Branson, MO. came from a museum. Excellent ’50’s pedal car Jeep with matching trailer. Looks like the originals from WW2 or Korean Wars. Perfect for the military collector.”

pedal-jeep-matching-trailer-watseka-il5 pedal-jeep-matching-trailer-watseka-il6 pedal-jeep-matching-trailer-watseka-il7 pedal-jeep-matching-trailer-watseka-il8 pedal-jeep-matching-trailer-watseka-il9

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Sept 1960 Ad and Merch Bulletin

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Documents, Features

I believe this is the first Advertising and Merchandise Bulletin that I have owned (or even seen). I bought several of these together on eBay. The particular one details the “600 series” of tri-fold brochures available during 1960 (which is one of those nagging issues I’ve always wondered about .. how many brochures were made). So, this answers that question. There were only 13 in that series.

When I get a chance, I’ll add links of images to this post.

1960-09-23-willys-motors-ad-merch-bulletin1 1960-09-23-willys-motors-ad-merch-bulletin2

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Video: 1972 Darien Gap Adventure

• CATEGORIES: Features, videos • TAGS: .

Over the weekend I had time to bend the side bars and create the initial mounting brackets for the side bars. But, my metal saw blade for my evolution chop saw (which has been great) gave out due to an unanticipated dust bag mount project–to help deter flies– for the cows.

I had planned to do updates last night, but, as seems to be a regular occurrence, life got in the way, again. But, thanks to Bill, I found this interesting adventure through the Darien Gap from 1972.

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Mysterious Hubcaps

• CATEGORIES: Features

Grace Wiggins posted these hubcaps to Facebook hoping to get a lead on who made them.

Given the rather ‘sloppy’ serif element at the top of the “J” I’d say these weren’t factory. And, I would be shocked if they were made in the US given Willys Motors and Kaiser Motors’ trademarks.

If does look like they are large enough to fit over most 4WD hubs, which would suggest they weren’t for 2WD models, but I could be wrong.


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Dec 1969 Man’s World Magazine

• CATEGORIES: Features, Magazine

Here’s another Men’s magazine that depicts a jeep on its cover.

View all the information on eBay

“Man’s World Magazine 2nd Series Vol. 15 #6 VG 1969”


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1954 Warn Brochure

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features • TAGS: .

I spotted this Warn hub brochure out of Canada on eBay. It’s not I have documented. Its 1954 date makes it a fairly early one for the locking and automatic hub models.

This is the front of the brochure:


The is the back of the brochure:


If you open from the back, it reveals this page:


The this page opens horizontally again to reveal the interior three pages (8.5″ x 11″)


This is the back of the fully opened brochure.


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Jeep on the Cover of Black Cat Comic

• CATEGORIES: Comics, Features

Steve shared this image of a jeep on the xmas issue of Black Cat Comics. This is issue #27 published February 10, 1951. According to this collector site, an issue of this comic sold in 2015 for $1,161! It probably doesn’t hurt the value that this issue includes an interview with John Wayne.


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1945 MobilOil Ads w/Jeeps on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

Here’s a second version of a 1945 Mobiloil ad featuring jeeps. This was part of a series of military-related ads buy Mobiloil in 1945 (see others here). I haven’t yet seen any other ones with jeeps in them.

View all the information on eBay

“Willys Jeep Mobiloil Vintage 1945 Ad Magazine Print Soldiers GI WWII
About 10.25 X 14 Inches. Carefully shipped flat.”



Here’s a second version of this ad campaign that included jeeps:

View all the information on eBay


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Cutlas Manufacturing History

• CATEGORIES: Features • TAGS: , .

wUPDATE 3: Time to recycle this older post. 


Originally Posted April 28th, 2017:

UPDATE 2: Niels shared a photo of his rare Cutlas key that can be used to spin the screws of the Power-Lock Hub.

UPDATE: 1) Well, it seems I forgot to read through this and edit it (I murdered the title for example) 2) The ending of the post has changed, thanks to Paul spotting an ad in the 1976 issue of Four Wheeler Magazine.


This is a Cutlas brochure for the company’s first hub, the Power-Lock.

In January of 1958, James Russell Lloyd, who up to that point had been president of the Free-Lock Company in Denver, filed a patent for a new type of hub on behalf of a company called the Cutlas Tool and Manufacturing Company out of Lyons, Illinois. At the time, Lloyd was still based in Denver (according to the patent filing), so what his relationship was with the Cutlas and Free-Lock companies at that time isn’t clear.


Patent was awarded in January of 1962.

Unlike the Free-Lock hubs, which relied on a rotating center piece to engage and disengage the hubs, the Cutlas hub had two rotating screws that had to be spun to engage and disengage the hubs.

In May of 1958, Lloyd copyrighted the term Power-Lock Free Wheeling Hub, a name which the hubs would be known as from then onward. Here are some photos:



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BestLok and EasyLok Hubs

• CATEGORIES: Features • TAGS: .

UPDATE II: This post was originally posted August 29, 2018:

Information about Husky and Dualmatic has been updated and more closely examined here.

Maury and I have been trying to determine how BestLok and EasyLok hubs are connected and how they are connected to Warn, Husky, and Dualmatic. The short answer is that we don’t quite know yet. But, below is what we do know. (Note, while Husky and Dualmatic are mentioned, it’s not a full history of either hub, histories I do need to address at some point).

In January of 1972, Richard Williams filed a patent, assigned to Warn-Belleview, for a new type of hub. Below is the image of that hub.


What’s curious is that there’s no documentation that Warn ever sold these hubs.

Even more curious, by July of 1972 this exact hub was produced and sold under the brand EasyLok, as advertised here, in the July issue of Four Wheeler Magazine:


Why these hubs weren’t sold nor branded under any traditional seller of the time is a mystery to us.

Earlier this year, Maury spotted a set of hubs with the Warn patented design that were manufactured in 1982. Maury managed to get ahold of photos that show the hubs were manufactured and warranteed by BestopDualmatic (a joined company formed when Wynn industries combined the companies around 1974).


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1957 Canvas Dealer Sign on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Artists/Drawings, Features

The seller of this sign has listed it at $250, but will consider lower offers. It likely is the only one of its kind.

View all the information on eBay

“Very cool canvas dealer sign. 46” x 24” Appears to be hand painted. This was found mounted to a board. There is some damage to one corner. Tape has been applied to help hold its position. Very cool piece. You will NOT find another

Vintage Canvas Banner Dealer Wall Hanging 1957 57 Willis Jeep RARE Hand Painted.”